Friday, 31 August 2012

Killing in the Name - Rage against the Machine

Wow, I don't think I've ever been so excited about The Wolverhampton Marathon as much as I am this weekend... I must add here that I've never been to enamoured with the course but for a two lapper it's always been a prequel to Nottingham and a bit of a notch on the belt for my marathon total...

ANYWAY... I've got three of my Performance Coaching Clients going for a sub 3, sub 3.15 and sub 3.30 pb's and one going for sub 4 with me... funny thing is that I'm the one with the least training miles in my legs so we'll see!!!

I have high hopes and will keep you posted on their performances on Sunday night... there's nothing like some added pressure both for them and me to make it public. Luckily I have Jenny at halfway for some support as she is resting prior to the World Championships next weekend.

I did 3.57.01 last year... let's see what's in the legs eh?

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Isles of Wonder - Underworld

Tonight well see the opening ceremony of The Paralympic Games... I wonder what we have in store here as how are the organisers going to follow the spectacle and achievements of the Olympics earlier this month.

I know they are different, and in fact what will unfold during the next two weeks will take monumental courage and will have been a massive personal test for some of the athletes, even to get to the start line.

Hopefully, the sponsorship from Sainsbury's will help promote the games to a really wide audience and that the British public will fully embrace the nature and spirit of the games... let's hope our Team GB win a whole host of medals...

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Start - The Jam

Today's been an awesome day and I've been lucky enough to have started 'Outdoor Fitness' reporter Ben Wilson on his way to his 100 mile race dream planned for next June's ULTRArace.100. Now I'll be honest and I must own up here to being more than worried about what I'd promised I could for Ben. As a Performance Coach who is more than confident about his abilities, even I thought that I might have over promised on this one.

On meeting Ben, all my trepidation disappeared - what a lovely guy and in the gym took the 'Coleman Baptism of Gym Programming' very well. Indeed so much so, I believe he'll do a good marathon on the way to the 100.

For me, I really want him to complete the 100... under 30 hours will be a total triumph from where he is now... under 24 hours would be simply inspirational. You'll be able to read  about his progress in the magazine and here of course.

Good Luck Ben... I now believe WE can do it!

Monday, 27 August 2012

Earth - Jefferson Starship

Well hopefully you had a much drier Bank Holiday than we've had down in ARAF... it feels as if the the nation has been in suspended animation as people try and wring the last dregs of summer out of their holidays.

World News has been dominated by 'The Armstrongs'... sadly for Neil as his amazing life came to it's natural end at 82 but more so for Lance who will no longer be held in such sporting reverence ever again following his alleged doping charges.

Whether we'll miss either, who knows? And only time will tell. It is sad that such an iconic figure of the 20th Century is no longer with us and also that a sporting legend is no more... We need people in our World to inspire and drive us on to greater things.

Who are your legends? Sir Chris Hoy? Sir Ranolph Fiennes...I'd love to know.

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Forever Autumn - Justin Hayward

Is it just me or does it already seem a little bit Autumnal out there?... with the August Bank Holiday and September looming fast I feel 2012 is speeding by at an alarming rate right now and before you know it we'll be welcoming in 2013... Talk about life in the fast lane!

Fitting in my own training right now is also proving hard but I'm doing my best to match some of my clients mileage and The Wolverhampton Marathon is now my main focus on September 2nd and a <3:56 is my target...

To help that it's watch what you eat week in our household which makes life slightly dull but Jenny's GB kit being delivered this morning certainly brightened up the day...

More tomorrow...

Sunday, 19 August 2012

Life in the Fast Lane - The Eagles

Well what a day it's been out on our ULTRArace Peaks 40 miler.... Talk about hot... it was FAST too, for everyone I think as we had course records and new pb's for lots of the runners. Hats off to Pawel Oboz who smashed Charlie Sharpes course record to run an amazing 5hrs 10minutes in his first ever ULTRA.

However, my runner of the day was Bill Mitchell, a mere 67 year old runner from Ashbourne who ran a great race and finished far from last and looked mighty sprightly at the finish. It just shows that age is no barrier to ULTRA-running... it just shows how running can be a sport to be enjoyed throughout life and Bill's a lesson to us to keep running for as long as possible.

All that's left is to add the race photos and get the results online - there's never a dull moment!

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Burn - Deep Purple

Talk about HOT!!! It's roasting up in Derbyshire tonight and we've been sweating buckets today out on the ULTRArace Peaks course, getting it marked up for our runners tomorrow.

The 40 miles has some very challenging hills to negotiate but I really enjoyed running them as i believe that the altitude running I did in the Alps is still lingering in my legs. I ran some hills I walked last year :-)))

Let's hope we have good weather again tomorrow for the race and that we have a really enjoyable day...

More post-race...

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Time - Pink Floyd

Boy Oh Boy... where does the time go? We have just put our ULTRArace.100 on-line for 2013 - that makes it's 5th year of running. What will make it very special for one runner is that I will be training them from scratch to go from Zero to Hero we hope to see if you can run a 100 mile race with just 10 months of preparation...

We both have our necks on the line with this one! I have massive belief in my coaching skills, of course but it's make or break as the race date is now set in stone for the last weekend in June 2013.

Do you think it's possible? I'd love to hear your comments...

More tomorrow from Derbyshire...

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

It's raining men - The Weather Girls

The lady in our local post office says that the weather is going to be really good for the next 17 days. And I am more than happy to take her prediction as the iPhone one we have been following for the past few days has been totally inaccurate. Don't get me wrong as a rule of thumb, I would expect a good downpour most days of the week in Cardiff but actually it's been bright blue skies and brilliant sunshine since Friday. Maybe our Lady in the Post Office should takeover down at the Apple Weather Centre... I reckon she'd do a better job...

Anyway, whilst Jenny was in talking to Cardiff's version of Michael Fish, I was routing thru the glovebox and came across an A to Z (of Birmingham of all places) that hadn't been thumbed for many a day as of course we now use the iPhone to navigate our way from place to place across town and down entire countries, especially in our case last year on Jenny's 'Length of Ireland' Guinness World Record.

It all got me thinking that if the weather is that inaccurate - how come the maps are so good?

Let's see how we get on tomorrow... we are route marking the ULTRArace Peaks course and it is proposing heavy rain right now... Maybe I need to call the Canton, Cardiff Post Office, for a more accurate picture?

More tomorrow...

Sunday, 12 August 2012

And I will Kiss - Underworld

More like and I will Pant!!! Especially after living and training at Altitude in the French Alps for all of last week... Yes that's where I've been... And an amazing experience it was too as it's some time since I was in the Atacama Desertrunning at 15,000ft in 2006 and Cardiff, (in God's Country) is only a matter of feet above sea level.

On day one just climbing a flight of steps caused mild panic in me as my lungs couldn't supply the necessary oxygen needed to stop me from going into mild asphyxiation... it's a feeling that I absolutely hate and the first run of five miles finishing with the aptly named Cardiac Hill bent me double and gave me back a shocking post run smokers hacking cough. It was total HELL...

Hmm, I am not sure that I am selling it very well so far BUT over the next week, boy what a difference the altitude running made. Jenny and I stayed with good with our good friend Chris Whistler who being roughly the same speed as myself made me a great partner in crime and we ran  out together up some mothers of hills... with very fast finishes.

Our maddest challenge was to run for 4 miles up a 1000m climb to a 2804m summit on very rough trail... it was pure pride that got us there the first day and we were in tatters at the top and laid down to recover... funnily enough we did it the next day too, this time a lot easier. I felt awesome! Really fit...

The training effect really works!

On our return I ran a Park Run 5km PB... beating my previous one set in 2011... just shows what you can do naturally with some good training and great belief in what you are doing is good for you.

It's good to be back... and more tomorrow!

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Bike - Pink Floyd

After my post on our Paula causing some great debate on Facebook, I wanted to write here about how amazing Bradley Wiggins did today. Totally understated in his performance and today spoke volumes about his confidence and level of training this year.

I always say that in any event it's all about 'Range' - the confidence to go the distance and perform at ones best on the day is what makes Champions and World Beaters. Bradley has it in buckets... If we could bottle it, I'm sure that we'd be in a far better medal position at this point in 'The Games'.

Working out a strategy for the future is the most important thing for our Sports Governing Bodies right now. Because it will be 2016 before we know it and we'll be in the same GB boat again.

Come on GB - let's get the 'Wiggins Effect' working across ALL sports!

More tomorrow...